PARIS, Maine — A Maine woman who ran a company that provided services for children with mental disabilities was sentenced Thursday to 42 months in state prison for overcharging the state’s MaineCare program by more than $4 million.
Dawn Solomon, who admitted to the fraud when pleading guilty in December, also was ordered to pay restitution as part of her plea agreement with prosecutors.
The 43-year-old Harrison woman ran a company called Living Independence Network Corp. in Norway that provided behavior management and physical and social development services to children with mental disabilities.
The attorney general’s Healthcare Crimes Unit uncovered her overbilling scheme after a state audit raised red flags in September 2009.
The investigation revealed that MaineCare paid Solomon’s company for services that weren’t rendered and expenses that were fabricated or unauthorized, prosecutors said. When the fraud began in 2006, Solomon was inflating her company’s MaineCare billings by about $87,000 a month, but the overbilling rose to an average of $134,000 a month in 2008.
Solomon put people on the payroll who were not Living Independence employees, including her children’s nanny, her father-in-law and handymen who worked on her rental properties and personal homes, so their wages would be subsidized by MaineCare. She also was reimbursed with MaineCare funds for personal expenses for travel, vehicles, tuition, gifts and other items.
The money that Solomon stole was supposed to pay for treating disabled children, said Attorney General William Schneider.
“We are pleased to have put this unscrupulous operator out of business,” Schneider said.